Connect with us

World

Phuket Media Watch: Iran sentences U.S. citizen to death

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published

 on 

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– World news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Iran sentences alleged U.S. spy to death
Phuket Gazette / News Wires

PHUKET: An Iranian court yesterday sentenced a U.S. citizen to death on charges that he worked as a spy for the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), state-run media reported.

28-year-old Amir Mirzai Hekmati, who was born in Arizona but is of Iranian descent, was arrested in December 2011 on charges he spied on Iran for the CIA. Iranian state TV later aired a video in which Hekmati confesses to the charges, although it is unknown if he was forced to do so.

According to Iranian prosecutors, Hekmati was hired by the CIA in May 2009 to carry out espionage operations in Iran. He previously served as a U.S. Marine in Iraq and Afghanistan where Iran claims he underwent decade-long intelligence training and had access to classified information.

“In this mission I was fooled by the CIA and although I had entered Iran with a mission to infiltrate in the Islamic Republic of Iran’s intelligence systems and to turn into a new source for the CIA, I didn’t want to hit a blow to Iran,” Hekmati said in his confession on state TV.

On Monday, branch 15 of Tehran’s Revolutionary Court sentenced Hekmati to death after being convicted of attempting to infiltrate Iran’s intelligence apparatus in an alleged effort to ‘implicate’ the country in sponsoring terrorism. Under Iranian law, he has 20 days to appeal.

U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said the U.S. government is still trying to confirm the reports through the Swiss embassy in Tehran, which represents American interests as the U.S. and Iran have no formal diplomatic relations.

“If true, we strongly condemn this verdict,” Nuland said. “Allegations that Mr. Hekmati either worked for, or was sent to Iran by the CIA are simply untrue. The Iranian regime has a history of falsely accusing people of being spies, of eliciting forced confessions, and of holding innocent Americans for political reasons.”

Hekmati’s family has insisted that he is not a spy and was simply visiting his grandmother.

Nuland urged the Iranian government to grant the Swiss protecting power immediate access to Hekmati. “[We also urge the Iranian government to] grant him access to legal counsel and release him without delay,” she added.

In September 2011, Iran’s Judiciary approved the release of two U.S. citizens who were earlier convicted of espionage and illegal entry. Shane Bauer and Joshua Fattal had been sentenced to eight years in prison a month earlier.

Bauer and Fattal were arrested in July 2009 along with Sarah Shourd when they crossed the border in Iraq’s Kurdistan region into Iran. Iranian prosecutors charged them with entering the country illegally and having links to U.S. intelligence, a claim which the defendants and their families have repeatedly denied.

According to the detained Americans, they were hiking in Iraq when they unknowingly crossed the unmarked border into Iran where they were arrested by border guards. Iranian prosecutors rejected those claims, saying there was ‘compelling evidence’ that they were spies.

Shourd was released on September 14, 2010, after 14 months of imprisonment. She was released on a $500,000 bail on ‘medical concerns,’ although no details were provided. Bauer and Fattal were also released on a $500,000 bail although none of them will return to Iran.

Iran claims nuclear plant will be operational by February 1
Phuket Gazette / News Wires

PHUKET: An underground uranium site in southern Iran will be fully operational by the end of the month, Tehran’s top nuclear official told state-run media on Sunday.

Fereydoun Abbasi, who heads Iran’s Atomic Energy Agency, said the nuclear plant in the port city of Bushehr is expected to reach full capacity by the end of the month. The plant was connected to Iran’s electricity grid in September with a capacity of 60 megawatts.

But Iranian officials expect the plant will be able to reach 1,000 megawatts and provide approximately 2.5 per cent of the country’s current electricity consumption. “The Bushehr plant, located along the Persian Gulf coast, will reach its full capacity of 1,000 megawatts by February 1,” Abbasi said, as quoted by the Fars news agency.

International concerns regarding Iran’s nuclear activities have been increasing for decades. While Iran has repeatedly stated that its nuclear program is for the peaceful purpose of providing energy, many countries contend it is seeking to develop nuclear weapons.

Abbasi, while speaking during a conference in Bandar Abbas, said Tehran had shown the new generation of its homemade centrifuge machines to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in a bid to demonstrate the ability of Iranian scientists.

Meanwhile, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehman-Parast reiterated that the country will never give up its right of uranium enrichment. “The nuclear program of our country is totally peaceful and is a basic right of our nation,” he said.

However, the spokesman said Iran is ready to continue nuclear talks with the international community. “We are ready for the talks. We have always said that we are ready for the talks and have always pointed out that the talks should aim at cooperation between the two sides, that is, to decide to talk for cooperation instead of confrontation,” he said.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

 

Get more from The Thaiger

Looking for your next home in Thailand? Let us match you with a local expert in minutes!

Thank you for your interest!

One of our agents will
reach out to you soon.

I want to:
  • Thailand (ไทย)+66
  • United States+1
  • United Kingdom+44
  • Australia+61
  • Afghanistan (‫افغانستان‬‎)+93
  • Albania (Shqipëri)+355
  • Algeria (‫الجزائر‬‎)+213
  • American Samoa+1684
  • Andorra+376
  • Angola+244
  • Anguilla+1264
  • Antigua and Barbuda+1268
  • Argentina+54
  • Armenia (Հայաստան)+374
  • Aruba+297
  • Australia+61
  • Austria (Österreich)+43
  • Azerbaijan (Azərbaycan)+994
  • Bahamas+1242
  • Bahrain (‫البحرين‬‎)+973
  • Bangladesh (বাংলাদেশ)+880
  • Barbados+1246
  • Belarus (Беларусь)+375
  • Belgium (België)+32
  • Belize+501
  • Benin (Bénin)+229
  • Bermuda+1441
  • Bhutan (འབྲུག)+975
  • Bolivia+591
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina (Босна и Херцеговина)+387
  • Botswana+267
  • Brazil (Brasil)+55
  • British Indian Ocean Territory+246
  • British Virgin Islands+1284
  • Brunei+673
  • Bulgaria (България)+359
  • Burkina Faso+226
  • Burundi (Uburundi)+257
  • Cambodia (កម្ពុជា)+855
  • Cameroon (Cameroun)+237
  • Canada+1
  • Cape Verde (Kabu Verdi)+238
  • Caribbean Netherlands+599
  • Cayman Islands+1345
  • Central African Republic (République centrafricaine)+236
  • Chad (Tchad)+235
  • Chile+56
  • China (中国)+86
  • Christmas Island+61
  • Cocos (Keeling) Islands+61
  • Colombia+57
  • Comoros (‫جزر القمر‬‎)+269
  • Congo (DRC) (Jamhuri ya Kidemokrasia ya Kongo)+243
  • Congo (Republic) (Congo-Brazzaville)+242
  • Cook Islands+682
  • Costa Rica+506
  • Côte d’Ivoire+225
  • Croatia (Hrvatska)+385
  • Cuba+53
  • Curaçao+599
  • Cyprus (Κύπρος)+357
  • Czech Republic (Česká republika)+420
  • Denmark (Danmark)+45
  • Djibouti+253
  • Dominica+1767
  • Dominican Republic (República Dominicana)+1
  • Ecuador+593
  • Egypt (‫مصر‬‎)+20
  • El Salvador+503
  • Equatorial Guinea (Guinea Ecuatorial)+240
  • Eritrea+291
  • Estonia (Eesti)+372
  • Ethiopia+251
  • Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)+500
  • Faroe Islands (Føroyar)+298
  • Fiji+679
  • Finland (Suomi)+358
  • France+33
  • French Guiana (Guyane française)+594
  • French Polynesia (Polynésie française)+689
  • Gabon+241
  • Gambia+220
  • Georgia (საქართველო)+995
  • Germany (Deutschland)+49
  • Ghana (Gaana)+233
  • Gibraltar+350
  • Greece (Ελλάδα)+30
  • Greenland (Kalaallit Nunaat)+299
  • Grenada+1473
  • Guadeloupe+590
  • Guam+1671
  • Guatemala+502
  • Guernsey+44
  • Guinea (Guinée)+224
  • Guinea-Bissau (Guiné Bissau)+245
  • Guyana+592
  • Haiti+509
  • Honduras+504
  • Hong Kong (香港)+852
  • Hungary (Magyarország)+36
  • Iceland (Ísland)+354
  • India (भारत)+91
  • Indonesia+62
  • Iran (‫ایران‬‎)+98
  • Iraq (‫العراق‬‎)+964
  • Ireland+353
  • Isle of Man+44
  • Israel (‫ישראל‬‎)+972
  • Italy (Italia)+39
  • Jamaica+1
  • Japan (日本)+81
  • Jersey+44
  • Jordan (‫الأردن‬‎)+962
  • Kazakhstan (Казахстан)+7
  • Kenya+254
  • Kiribati+686
  • Kosovo+383
  • Kuwait (‫الكويت‬‎)+965
  • Kyrgyzstan (Кыргызстан)+996
  • Laos (ລາວ)+856
  • Latvia (Latvija)+371
  • Lebanon (‫لبنان‬‎)+961
  • Lesotho+266
  • Liberia+231
  • Libya (‫ليبيا‬‎)+218
  • Liechtenstein+423
  • Lithuania (Lietuva)+370
  • Luxembourg+352
  • Macau (澳門)+853
  • Macedonia (FYROM) (Македонија)+389
  • Madagascar (Madagasikara)+261
  • Malawi+265
  • Malaysia+60
  • Maldives+960
  • Mali+223
  • Malta+356
  • Marshall Islands+692
  • Martinique+596
  • Mauritania (‫موريتانيا‬‎)+222
  • Mauritius (Moris)+230
  • Mayotte+262
  • Mexico (México)+52
  • Micronesia+691
  • Moldova (Republica Moldova)+373
  • Monaco+377
  • Mongolia (Монгол)+976
  • Montenegro (Crna Gora)+382
  • Montserrat+1664
  • Morocco (‫المغرب‬‎)+212
  • Mozambique (Moçambique)+258
  • Myanmar (Burma) (မြန်မာ)+95
  • Namibia (Namibië)+264
  • Nauru+674
  • Nepal (नेपाल)+977
  • Netherlands (Nederland)+31
  • New Caledonia (Nouvelle-Calédonie)+687
  • New Zealand+64
  • Nicaragua+505
  • Niger (Nijar)+227
  • Nigeria+234
  • Niue+683
  • Norfolk Island+672
  • North Korea (조선 민주주의 인민 공화국)+850
  • Northern Mariana Islands+1670
  • Norway (Norge)+47
  • Oman (‫عُمان‬‎)+968
  • Pakistan (‫پاکستان‬‎)+92
  • Palau+680
  • Palestine (‫فلسطين‬‎)+970
  • Panama (Panamá)+507
  • Papua New Guinea+675
  • Paraguay+595
  • Peru (Perú)+51
  • Philippines+63
  • Poland (Polska)+48
  • Portugal+351
  • Puerto Rico+1
  • Qatar (‫قطر‬‎)+974
  • Réunion (La Réunion)+262
  • Romania (România)+40
  • Russia (Россия)+7
  • Rwanda+250
  • Saint Barthélemy+590
  • Saint Helena+290
  • Saint Kitts and Nevis+1869
  • Saint Lucia+1758
  • Saint Martin (Saint-Martin (partie française))+590
  • Saint Pierre and Miquelon (Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon)+508
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines+1784
  • Samoa+685
  • San Marino+378
  • São Tomé and Príncipe (São Tomé e Príncipe)+239
  • Saudi Arabia (‫المملكة العربية السعودية‬‎)+966
  • Senegal (Sénégal)+221
  • Serbia (Србија)+381
  • Seychelles+248
  • Sierra Leone+232
  • Singapore+65
  • Sint Maarten+1721
  • Slovakia (Slovensko)+421
  • Slovenia (Slovenija)+386
  • Solomon Islands+677
  • Somalia (Soomaaliya)+252
  • South Africa+27
  • South Korea (대한민국)+82
  • South Sudan (‫جنوب السودان‬‎)+211
  • Spain (España)+34
  • Sri Lanka (ශ්‍රී ලංකාව)+94
  • Sudan (‫السودان‬‎)+249
  • Suriname+597
  • Svalbard and Jan Mayen+47
  • Swaziland+268
  • Sweden (Sverige)+46
  • Switzerland (Schweiz)+41
  • Syria (‫سوريا‬‎)+963
  • Taiwan (台灣)+886
  • Tajikistan+992
  • Tanzania+255
  • Thailand (ไทย)+66
  • Timor-Leste+670
  • Togo+228
  • Tokelau+690
  • Tonga+676
  • Trinidad and Tobago+1868
  • Tunisia (‫تونس‬‎)+216
  • Turkey (Türkiye)+90
  • Turkmenistan+993
  • Turks and Caicos Islands+1649
  • Tuvalu+688
  • U.S. Virgin Islands+1340
  • Uganda+256
  • Ukraine (Україна)+380
  • United Arab Emirates (‫الإمارات العربية المتحدة‬‎)+971
  • United Kingdom+44
  • United States+1
  • Uruguay+598
  • Uzbekistan (Oʻzbekiston)+998
  • Vanuatu+678
  • Vatican City (Città del Vaticano)+39
  • Venezuela+58
  • Vietnam (Việt Nam)+84
  • Wallis and Futuna (Wallis-et-Futuna)+681
  • Western Sahara (‫الصحراء الغربية‬‎)+212
  • Yemen (‫اليمن‬‎)+967
  • Zambia+260
  • Zimbabwe+263
  • Åland Islands+358

    image

    Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

    Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

    Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

    Click to comment

    You must be logged in to post a comment Login

    Leave a Reply

    Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

      Follow Thaiger by email:

      Malaysia8 mins ago

      Malaysia allows two new airlines to operate as industry still reels from Covid-19

      Singapore11 mins ago

      Singapore crowned most “Instagrammable” place in the world – Big 7 Travel

      Thailand35 mins ago

      Northeast border patrol seizes 10 million baht worth of cannabis

      Sponsored1 day ago

      What makes Supalai Icon Sathorn the ideal property choice

      image
      Tourism1 hour ago

      Thailand’s Tourism and Sports Ministry to propose reopening Test & Go registration by February

      Bangkok2 hours ago

      Thai baht rises as officials consider resumption of Test & Go

      Thailand3 hours ago

      Suvarnabhumi Airport’s passenger terminal to be extended for future tourists

      image
      Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
      Thailand3 hours ago

      More Burmese migrants detained along Thailand’s western border

      Coronavirus (Covid-19)3 hours ago

      Tuesday Covid Update: 6,397 new cases, provincial totals

      Bangkok3 hours ago

      Teenagers arrested for allegedly stealing batteries, steel railings from a train station

      World4 hours ago

      Chinese sperm imposter sued in Japan after lying about ethnicity, education, wife

      Bangkok4 hours ago

      Bangkok field hospitals fill with patients, Prayut urges Thais not to let their guard down

      Vietnam5 hours ago

      Vietjet to resume two weekly flights between Vietnam and Thailand this week

      Thailand5 hours ago

      7 people rescued after speedboat from Koh Chang hits rocks, sinks

      Thailand5 hours ago

      Tonga tragedy prompts PM to check if Thailand’s prepared for another tsunami

      Thailand5 hours ago

      Thai government to help dropouts return to school

      Thailand4 months ago

      Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

      Thailand11 months ago

      Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

      Tourism11 months ago

      Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

      Phuket11 months ago

      Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

      Tourism11 months ago

      Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

      Thailand11 months ago

      Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

      Tourism11 months ago

      In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

      Thailand12 months ago

      Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

      Thailand12 months ago

      Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

      Thailand12 months ago

      Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

      Thailand1 year ago

      Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

      Thailand1 year ago

      Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

      Thailand1 year ago

      Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

      Thailand1 year ago

      Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

      Thailand1 year ago

      Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

      Trending